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Haynes and Boone, LLP

Ben L. Mesches

Ben L. Mesches


Haynes and Boone, LLP
Texas, U.S.A.

tel: +1 214 651 5234
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Ben is a board-certified appellate lawyer with diverse experience in complex business, energy, and bankruptcy disputes in state and federal appellate courts. He has handled numerous appeals in the Fifth Circuit, argued before the Texas Supreme Court, where he served as a law clerk, and is frequently before courts of appeals in Texas and beyond.

Ben has also played a key role on successful trial teams, developing legal strategy from the outset of litigation, making and responding to dispositive motions, preparing and arguing the jury charge, and crafting post-trial briefing.

Selected to serve on the prestigious exam commission administering the board certification exam in civil appellate law, Ben is a respected leader in the appellate bar. He is an officer in the nation's largest appellate bench-bar organization, has worked on procedural rules for electronic filing, and regularly writes and speaks on appellate practice topics, including practice before the Fifth Circuit and the Texas Supreme Court, bankruptcy appeals, federal appellate procedure, and legal writing.


  • J.D., University of Texas at Austin, 2001, with honors; Member, Texas Law Review
  • B.A., Political Science Trinity University, 1998cum laude
Areas of Practice
Professional Career

Significant Accomplishments

In the Fifth Circuit, upheld a municipality's zoning scheme related to natural gas production in the face of preemption, commerce clause, and eminent domain challenges. Enforced forum selection clause, in the Dallas Court of Appeals, resulting in the dismissal of franchisor's claims against franchisee. Reversal and rendition of a take-nothing judgment, in the Austin Court of Appeals, on employment-related harassment claims against retailer. Persuaded the Dallas Court of Appeals to reverse and render judgment dismissing claims against officers of a franchisor for lack of personal jurisdiction. Vacatur, in the Fort Worth Court of Appeals, of an award of damages and dismissal of suit because the probate court lacked subject-matter jurisdiction over claims related to a right of first refusal. Obtained reversal, in the San Antonio Court of Appeals, of a temporary injunction freezing more than $150 million of assets held by real estate investors based on the Federal Arbitration Act's automatic-stay provision. In the Fifth Circuit, preserved summary judgment in an oil and gas case involving fraudulent transfer, turnover, and alter ego theories.

Trial Court Experience:
In a $200 million fraud and fiduciary duty case involving a complex energy transaction, procured dismissal of claims for lack of personal jurisdiction in Indiana federal court. In a medical partnership dispute, obtained relief from a multi-million jury verdict with a successful motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict. In a multi-million dollar case under the Texas Securities Act in federal court, secured favorable jury charge and motion for judgment as a matter of law rulings, resulting in the complete dismissal of the plaintiff's claims on the eve of closing argument. In an oil and gas dispute alleging mutual and unilateral mistake in a deed, successfully argued the jury charge as part of a trial team that obtained a complete defense verdict. Through post-trial briefing, implemented a legal strategy that defeated an $80 million software-related copyright suit in federal court.

Bankruptcy Appeals:
In the Fifth Circuit, reversed a fee enhancement award granted to debtor's financial advisor, clarifying legal standards applicable to fee claims under § 328(a) of the Bankruptcy Code; On direct appeal to the Fifth Circuit, preserved a standing defense to a preference action based on a release and novation agreement; Persuaded the Fifth Circuit Court to dismiss - on equitable mootness grounds - the appeal of a $3.6 billion bankruptcy plan of reorganization, challenged by a competing bidder and the company's union; Obtained appellate ruling from a Delaware federal district court striking liquidated damages provision invoked by landlord in post-confirmation litigation about lease assumed by the debtor; In Fifth Circuit appeal addressing the intersection between the Bankruptcy Code's automatic-stay provision, the debtor's power over executory contracts, and the Anti-Assignment Act, blocked the federal government's attempt to terminate a power contractor; Vacated a summary judgment ruling that dismissed an action seeking to revoke a confirmation order.

WSG's members are independent firms and are not affiliated in the joint practice of professional services. Each member exercises its own individual judgments on all client matters.

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